“It’s this idea of re-creating balance without going into geometry or symmetry,” said Nicolas Bos, vice president and worldwide creative director of Van Cleef & Arpels. With that, he pointed to a pair of colored asymmetric drop earrings in 18-karat white and pink gold — one with a bird perched atop a row of round baguette and pear-cut sapphires and diamonds, its ornate tail designed to curve around the top of the ear; the other depicts a bird in flight.

The creation was a highlight of Van Cleef’s Couleurs de Paradis fine jewelry collection being presented at the brand’s Rue de la Paix headquarters this week. Honoring birds, one of the house’s favorite inspirations, the line offered both figurative and abstract takes on the theme. In the latter camp, there were five sautoirs with linked feather-inspired curlicue motifs, including a turquoise, white gold and diamond necklace reminiscent of some of the Sixties Van Cleef & Arpels pieces Elizabeth Taylor had in her personal collection. Also lovely was a necklace with a central ornament depicting a phoenix in full flight, its decorative tail feathers set with dégradé pink diamonds, with dramatic strands of blood-red spinel beads.

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